What The Rule On Fighting In Hockey? [Answered!]

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While not as popular as in some other sports, hockey nevertheless has its own distinct rules and regulations. These rules and regulations don’t just apply to the game itself but also to the conduct of the fans attending and following the sport.

The question is, what are the rules regarding fighting in hockey? And is there any leeway for fans to express their displeasure with fighting methods?

The Goal Is To Score

The objective of the game is to score as many goals as possible. This is why defenders are allowed to block shots and why there is no penalty for a goalie to stop a puck with his feet. If a goal is scored during play, the players, coaches, and fans show their appreciation for the hard work by throwing sticks and pucks at one another.

There is no specific regulation regarding fighting in hockey, and the general rule is that no player may be charged with fighting. However, coaches are able to prohibit certain players from participating in specific fights. If a coach prohibits a player from fighting, that player will be unable to protect himself from opposing players seeking to start a brawl.

Fights Should Be Self-Regulating

Since fighting is generally accepted as a vital part of the game, there is little the league can do to prevent or regulate individual fights in hockey. However, the NHL does have the ability to suspend or fine players for fighting – making the potential penalty for fighting almost as great as the fight itself.

The fact that fights are considered an important part of the game means that the officials in charge of enforcing the rules have the power to throw out players who continually throw punches at each other. In such a case, the officials will most likely order the players to take a break or head to the locker room for a “timeout” so the frenzy of the game does not threaten to tear the arena apart.

On the other hand, if a player stops throwing punches after a few minutes, the officials may give him a pat on the back and tell him to continue protecting his teammates. In some cases, coaches may even motivate their players to keep their cool and refrain from fighting with words instead of fists, as a way of teaching them responsibility and good sportsmanship.

It’s Not Just About The Score

Although it’s important to score goals, it’s not the only thing that matters in hockey. If the team with the most goals wins the game, congratulations, you’ve just witnessed a beautiful display of athletic prowess. But if that same team repeatedly throws punches at the other team, the satisfaction of the physical performance diminishes somewhat due to the unsportsmanlike behavior.

Whether or not a team scores a goal, fans generally have the right to express their displeasure with the way games are being played. Most stadiums and arenas have signs somewhere on the wall that inform fans that fighting is not permitted inside the building. But what happens when the fans’ voices are drowned out by the rowdiness of the few?

As previously stated, there is no specific regulation regarding fighting in hockey. But coaches and players can certainly prevent fights from breaking out by sticking to their respective sides of the rink and not giving in to the temptation to throw a punch – or even a series of punches – as a way of showing who is the best.

No Fights Unless There Are Rules

If there are specific rules against fighting, then there won’t be any fights. The fact that the officials have the power to throw out players for fighting means that there is a possibility they may do so. If, however, there are no specific rules against fighting, then the only thing left to do is to ask the players not to resort to violence.

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